Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Dear Manny

Dear Manny:

You know I love you alot. Your Charismatic Smile is one of the finest I have ever seen. Dynamic, Interesting, Personable, and First Year Major League Manager, all descriptions of your character. All of which draws my interest to you. And, yet I can only feel sorry for you right now. Our Washington Nationals are playing poorly. Their inability to make the routine play is mind numbing at times. And, tonight's disaster of a game against The Phillies in Philadelphia nearly unwatchable.

Granted, it was well known, Your 2007 Washington Nationals were going to struggle. A FACT you have also known since the very day you graciously and willingly took this job. Never one to give up (and rightfully so), you have remained positive, despite the truth that your starting pitching for this season would in all likelihood bury The Nationals. Also, the truth that your hitters do not provide alot of power at the plate. But, never did you realize how over matched your Bullpen would be from all their early deficits. Not One Month into the season, Our Relief Corp is WIPED OUT.

AND, NEVER DID YOU REALIZE that your fielders would continually not be able to make the routine defensive play. Three errors tonight could have been called, you know that, but The Official Scorer was generous, as usual. Robert Fick could not track a fly ball to the wall in left with two outs, turning twice, then watching the ball land not even half way up the wall right behind him for a Chase Utley Double. Immediately followed by a John Patterson fastball down the middle of the plate HAMMERED OUT BY RYAN HOWARD for a two run homer.

Dimitri Young dropped a sure double play ball that led to a Phillie Run in the 5th. And, Ronnie Belliard dropped a popup to short right field in the 6th, leading to two additional runs for Philadelphia. One announcer blamed the wind. But, I am not buying that. Really, how bad can this get?

Manny, I am all for "THE PLAN", but please explain to me why Robert Fick started in leftfield tonight? Fick may well be a clubhouse favorite, and I know from personal experience, he is a TERRIFIC GUY. But, WHY IS HE STARTING? Robert Fick has yet to deliver in the clutch in 2007. And, only twice in 2006. If Our Washington Nationals are rebuilding, then why is Chris Snelling not out there playing leftfield each and every day, especially with Nook Logan still on the Disabled List. We are team building, not giving aged veterans with diminishing skills the opportunity to resurrect their career, for the sake of a youngster. If that was the case, why not keep Jose Guillen? Why not keep Jose Vidro, and definitely, Why not keep Livan Hernandez (Still MY FAVORITE & MOST ENTERTAINING NATIONAL TO EVER WEAR THE WASHINGTON UNIFORM)? Really, Why?

I can put up with loses, but I can't put up with the little pride shown by our players. Each and every time Our Washington Nationals step out on the field, I WANT TO SEE EFFORT!! I don't want to see a Nationals hitter bunt and watch himself get thrown out in a double play. I don't want to see fielders making a less than honest effort on defense. I don't want to see hitters swinging at the very first pitch when an opposing pitcher is in trouble. I don't want to hear your starters complain about their lack of confidence or not being 100% healthy. And, most importantly, I don't want to see a team that ACCEPTS LOSING and proceeds to make excuses for themselves.

Manny, my friend--There could be very few on The Nationals Bandwagon more than me. Never, will I turn my back on you or this team. Never in my lifetime. Yet, even I am bothered by the less than stellar effort put forth by Our Washington Nationals. Right now, we are in trouble. The ship is sinking fast.

You have been dealt a very uneven hand. With all your flair, decency and knowledge, please do your best, TO GIVE ME, THE AFRICAN QUEEN, SECTION 320 and OUR FANS, something to cheer for the remainder of 2007. I know its inside you. And, I know its inside many of our players. Hang in there. Be tough. Be Competitive. Help resurrect Our Franchise.

Manny, I am so sorry. You deserve better.



PS--During today's online chat with Barry Svrluga at, Barry did respond to my question whether Manny stills flashes his customary charismatic smile despite the teams troubles this season:

Acta: He's still got that smile. We see it more in the afternoon than late at night, though, after some of these games.

Personally, I was happy to read that fact.

Tonight's In Game Photos--(AP) Tom Mihalek


Brian said...

SBF: Will you please try to answer this question? It's not rhetorical.

What can Manny do to get the team to play better baseball?

Anonymous said...

You wrote it all SBF. That honestly brought a tear to my eye.

JayB said...

Thank you SBF,

We all want the Nats to as good as they can be. What we are seeing night after night is far below what they could be.

I beleive there are lots of things Manny can do (will wait for your thoughts here) and should have done in Spring Training on the field and by pushing the the Front Office.....but for those who feel he is powerless and this is the best he can do then the blame for what is a joke of a team is on Stan and the Plan.

Being the but of every joke is not player development.

C'ville Nat said...

Nats 320,

Thanks for capturing the angst of Nats' Nation. You were kind to Fick. He should not be on the team. If we are going to have him and DeAngelo on the team, we might as well bring Kasto and Broadway up and let them learn on the job.

I do not want to see Scheider roll over into a weak two hopper to second, when Flores could be learning (and yes, he could hit bbs all over the yard).

Finally, what is the cost-benefit of Dmitri Young. He cannot pick a ball out of the dirt.

Frankly, I am not buying this hoo-hah about clubhouse presence and veteran leadership. I want to see somebody, like Guillen, with a passion for winning, call some of these clowns out.

It is one thing to be young and learning (I can live with that), but quite another to lack pride (I can't live with that).

Screech's Best Friend said...

Brian: That is the point. Manny really can't do much more with what he was given. Truly, I feel sorry for him. I am not making that up. But, I know he wants the team to play harder. And, right now. that's all I want to see. Players that make the effort each and every game. We may well be outgunned. I can live with that. But, I will never accept not caring.

Anonymous said...

The Not Caring IS the problem.

The SOURCE of the problem is the of season actions (not words) of Stan and Learners.

Young players, low expectations, no support for 2007, no vet leadership on the field....this always was and still is a recipe for disaster.

The real crime is how Nat Management thinks this is all fine.....the bills are paid, profits are up, season tickets are non refundable and taxpayers are building a new park.

What a way to respect the fan base.

Anonymous said...

Am I the only one who saw Kearns pull up on the pop to shallow right with the bases loaded and Belliard was charged an error. Considering the situation that was the right fielder's ball all the way. The crash with Johnson is still in his head.

From the Yellow Seats said...

I would love to hear from Nationals management what the "plan" for this year is without a single mention of the future. Despite Nats management wishes, MLB did not take 2007 off.

Tin Foil Hat Seller said...

I sense a gold mine of a sales opportunity here...

ntr Lerners said...

Anonymous 10:46 am:

Actually, we do care. There is a plan. You may think it's a sucky plan and that's ok. But we are working to make this franchise better over a long stretch of time, not just by spending like drunken sailors on mediocre veteran "talent."

You have to care about this franchise in order to have the patience to see this plan through.

Oh, and if you're going to make baseless attacks of us not caring, "Lern" to spell our names right.

Anonymous said...

Ops....sorry NTR Lerners......but what is baseless? You made $20 Million Profit last cut parole by $30 Million this year. You could not even get proven managers to come in for an interview, you hired all your relatives and put them on is worst in baseball.....I agree you have a sucks for the fans but I am sure it is nice to get the whole extended family over paid with not baseball experience!

ntr Lerners said...

We think Anonymous 5:30 pm in the post above this one said it best...